The COVID-19 pandemic began as a health crisis, but it quickly became an economic crisis as well. Businesses had to shut down or deal with supply shortages, all while potentially laying off employees. While some companies shut down, others experienced more success than ever before.
Specific industries learned to thrive in the COVID-19 crisis. Check out the eight biggest reasons consumers demanded change and how each sector has shifted to adapt to these challenging times:
1. People Create More Clutter
Stay-at-home orders forced more people to leave their full-time office spaces and schools to slow the spread of COVID-19. The effort began to work, but it also created more household waste. Cleaning companies immediately began seeing an increase in demand for teams to visit new clients and take care of trash and laundry needs. As long as those teams adhere to strict sanitary precautions, residents continue paying so they can have a clean shelter-in-place environment.
2. Drive-Ins Become Popular
Movie theaters shut down at the beginning of the pandemic because they couldn’t provide a safe environment for viewers. Instead, drive-ins began reopening and seeing success because people could remain in their cars and watch the films they loved. This trend may continue since experts expect the coronavirus to stick around for the next year and potentially even longer.
3. Liquor Sales Surge
Anxiety, stress and fear have had a new constant presence in the lives of people around the world. Given the upended state of society, liquor sales surged more than 20% after businesses and schools shut down. Liquor stores keep the profits soaring by offering delivery and curbside pickup in areas with the strictest lockdown orders.
4. Small Grocers Help Restock
Panicked buyers left major grocery stores empty in March, which gave small independent grocers a chance to step in and help. The National Grocers Association (NGA) found that independent grocery stores helped larger chains restock faster than ever, giving them a much-needed boost in revenue as shoppers began to leave their homes less frequently.
5. Everyone Wants Food Delivered
At-risk individuals rely on food delivery services to send groceries to their front door. Along with protecting their health, anyone who orders grocery delivery saves money and time while keeping their neighbors from potential exposure. Delivery options aren’t likely to disappear even after a COVID vaccine becomes available, which gives businesses who offer it a reliable source of income.
6. Families Need Canned Food
Some people may need to go to grocery stores but want to reduce how often they go. Instead of buying fresh food every two weeks, they’re relying on canned and jarred products. They last longer in the pantry, which is why shelf-stable food sales jumped over 158% in a week at the end of March. Companies that sell canned food or produce the cans themselves have seen a significant increase in demand, which makes their industries more stable than others.
7. Gaming System Pass the Time
Staying at home isn’t easy when you run out of books to read or movies to watch. Consumers quickly turned to video game consoles for boredom relief, quadrupling Nintendo Switch sales alone by the end of March. As production factories begin to reopen around the world and products ship to customers, the desire for video games will continue to be more prevalent as long as people see the need to remain at home.
8. Home Workouts Require Equipment
Three months into the COVID-19 pandemic, gyms are still struggling to open safely. In response, people have ordered home workout equipment. Compared to the same time last year, sales rose over 130% in March, which includes everything from bikes to free weights. Even when gyms decide when and how to reopen, at-home routines will still be the preferred exercise method for at-risk individuals.
Success Requires Adaptation
These businesses learned to thrive during COVID-19 because they adapted to customers’ needs. Industries that want to follow suit should do the same, especially as COVID remains a public health threat over the coming years.
Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, Hotel Online, SevenRooms, Point 2 Home and more! Follow Kacey on Twitter and subscribe to her blog to keep up with her travels and inspiring posts!